Hesitant Witness

I’ve been listening to a radio programme about charisma. It’s been on daily, early on while I prepare breakfast. It was the last one today and they were discussing whether being charismatic is necessarily a good thing. Not for the person themselves but the recipients of it. The Reverend Coles (ex-Bronski Beat) talked about preferring, trusting, being more comfortable with what he called a hesitant witness. Strength, or at least what we see as strength – self confidence, certainty, arrogance, braggadaccio – is lauded in our culture. Perhaps, as the Reverend suggests there might be another way of being, of seeing.

Domestic duties done. It feels good. I find the physicality of it more and more testing as I age. I want to keep doing it for as long as I may. I like to keep my own home clean. I want no maids or servants. At least not yet. Our neighbour passed me yesterday in the hallway. She is amazing. She is a hundred and she still walks into town each day, usually with some dapper hat on. Yesterday she was carrying the recycling to the bin. She is very deaf and her eyesight isn’t good, but she is still open and engaging with the world. I take my hat off to her. Though, please, please take me before I get to that age. In my sleep preferably. Is it too much to ask?

A new poppet on the way soon. I write to ask how she is. I await a reply. I send love regardless. Through the ether. Always.

By Ellen Bell

Artist and writer currently living in Aberystwyth.